Ai Weiwei passport

n Beijing, July 22 (Reuters): Chinese dissident artist and free speech advocate Ai Weiwei said that authorities in Beijing returned his passport today, more than four years after it was confiscated following his 81-day secret detention.

Ai, 58, said by telephone that police from the Exit and Entry Bureau, which issues passports to Chinese citizens, called him this morning to collect his passport, which he now has in hand.

With his passport he should now be able to attend a retrospective of his work at London's Royal Academy of Art in September.

Myanmar fine

n Yangon (AFP): A Myanmar court has fined two journalists one million kyat ($850) each for defaming the President, a newspaper editor said on Wednesday, as concerns mount over press freedoms in the nation ahead of landmark elections.

Writer dead

n Washington (Reuters): E.L. Doctorow, the author of popular novels grounded in American history, including Ragtime and Billy Bathgate, has died at the age of 84, his publisher said on Tuesday.


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